Sunday, July 15, 2007

More Coffee Please

I have had my morning coffee but yet I am still having trouble wrapping my brain around the morning headlines. On Ynet the headline reads Fatah Gunmen Disarm. In our desire to find ways to make Abbas strong like bull something interesting is happening. The first gesture was that we would release 250 Palestinian prisoners most of whom belong to Fatah. These guys are all almost at the end of their sentences. While I'm not against their release I have to laugh at some of the pundits who think this will strengthen Abbas. They think the Palestinians will be awed by Abbas's power to get what he wants from Israel. They basically think the Palestinians are stupid. Step two however is something else.

Israel is offering amnesty to 178 members of Fatah's terrorist wing including Zubeidi. So far 150 men have signed the agreement in which they relinquish ties to the terror group and hand in their weapons. These are the terms according to an article in HaAretz-

The agreement with the Al-Aqsa fugitives includes four stages:

1. They will promise to refrain from terrorism and cut their links with the group.

2. They will spend a week in holding areas of the PA, where they will not be allowed to use cellular telephones or contact members of the group.

3. They will restrict their movements, for a three-month period, to the area where they reside.

4. After three months, they will be allowed to move freely in the West Bank.

These men will likely join the PA security forces. If it works there will be a win win situation. We get a PA government without a terrorist wing. We are now able to concentrate our efforts on Hamas and friends which are holed up in Gaza. This is also a win for Abbas. We can do his dirty work. Abbas can lead a strong government with a prime minister (Fayyad) who is on the right track. He wants to build the Palestinian economy and infrastructure regardless of what happens with negotiations with Israel. Something I have been talking about for a long time. The Palestinians need to take care of themselves. If Fayyad continues to lead in this way they have a ray of hope for a better life.

I think I need another cup of coffee. I must be in an alternate universe where something might go right in the middle east.

Submitted by Carol